Monday, August 29, 2016

The Expensive Lesson That I Learned Today

Sometimes...I do stupid shit. Today was one of those days. So, I need to write about it.

As you age and you learn, you also realize that there may be some lessons that your parents forgot to fill you in on. Maybe it's about the importance of an IRA. Or possibly even possibly how to balance a checkbook. But I learned that you REALLY need to read over all of the fine print when it comes to your insurance benefits.

Now I'm out $180 for an appointment that I was expecting to pay $35 for...

I came home and immediately signed on to Capital Blue to check my benefits. I found the sheets that I was given when I was first enrolled. And, nowhere on my sheets does it clearly state that I needed any type of preauthorization for my appointment. There was no asterisk; no number to refer to. It simply showed that I would owe a 'specialty copay' of $35 for in-network providers. 

I get to my appointment 10 minutes early and, there in my paperwork, it states:
"I do not participate in commercial health insurance networks, but will provide a receipt ( including procedure code and diagnosis ) that you can submit to your insurance carrier for reimbursement."

This was news to me: nowhere on the website for the office did it state this information. 

Then you're left with the decision to leave and possibly pay a 'cancelled appointment fee', or just pay and stay. I chose the latter.

And, of course, customer service for the insurance company closed 15 minutes after my appointment ended.

So a few tips:
1. Make sure to read all the fine print. I don't know what I possibly missed, but was massive.
2. If you have questions, call the insurance company. Any questions. Little; big. It doesn't matter. If you have any questions, just call.
3. Check, check and triple check. Make sure you have all the information for insurance and the office prior to even walking through their door. If not, you could be left paying a fee far more than expected. And not be happy about it.

Now I'm sitting here, stressing about the idiocy of my actions and how I ( yet again ) went off of a sense of urgency instead of common sense. 

I can only hope that when I call the insurance company tomorrow, they can give me the information to submit the claim on my own and *pray* that I get some sort of reimbursement back.